On July 2, 2019, the first meeting of the Ad Hoc Group of experts on Whistleblower protection in anti-doping (T-DO WbP) chaired by Margarita Pakhnotskaya was held in the Council of Europe in Strasbourg (France).
The group was established in May 2019 during the 50th meeting of the Monitoring Group of the Anti-Doping Convention of the Council of Europe, at which RUSADA Deputy Director General Margarita Pakhnotskaya was appointed as the Chair of the Group.
The Group consists of experts in investigations, data collection, jurisprudence, education, and also includes representatives from national anti-doping agencies, governments, the World Anti-Doping Agency, the International Olympic Committee and other international organizations.
The group aims at creating a model of an effective system protecting the rights of whistleblowers in the field of anti-doping, taking into account international experience not only in the field of sports, as well as guiding the process of awareness raising on reporting anti-doping rules violations both among the general public and sports environment.
The Group will develop recommendations to help members of the Council of Europe establish a legal framework which guarantees the high level of rights protection for whistleblowers in anti-doping.
At the first meeting, experts have discussed the main challenges faced in work with whistleblowers by anti-doping organizations. It was decided to review the existing policies acting at the national and international levels. Directions for further examination and detalisation by the Group have been also appointed.
Cooperation with whistleblowers and effective protection of their rights lie in the basis of the fight against doping in sports. RUSADA actively develops cooperation with whistleblowers, including joint investigations with international organizations.
The Russian Federation is a signatory to the 1989 Anti-Doping Convention of the Council of Europe. In 2019, the Convention turns 30 years old.